ICSA suckler chair John Halley has called on the Department of Agriculture to deliver the €100m Brexit aid package to farmers as soon as possible.

However, he stated that his organisation thoroughly rejected any form of aid that came with an attachment to reduce suckler numbers.

“[The] ICSA is totally opposed to any conditionality, such as compulsory stock reductions, being linked to the €100m package,” Halley said.

“We want to see the money delivered as quickly as possible to the farmers hit hardest by Brexit.”

Brexit aid package

Some €50m in aid was awarded by the European Commission, with matched funding from the Irish Government for beef farmers who suffered price losses due to Brexit uncertainty.

But controversy has reigned within farming circles since it was announced that herd reduction would be a condition of the aid package.

Halley added that farmers had lost confidence in the industry and that a scheme similar to REPS needed to be introduced to reward farmers adequately for environmental measures and keep them on the land.

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